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Mocking The 53: Two Weeks In, Much Has Changed

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Mocking The 53: Two Weeks In, Much Has Changed

Posted on 06 August 2010 by Glenn Clark

It’s been just 11 days since I posted my Pre-Training Camp edition of “Mocking The 53″ here at WNST.net. In the short (almost) two weeks since the Baltimore Ravens originally reported to Westminster, there has already been some significant flux in the way the team’s roster shapes up.

Obviously the loss of Domonique Foxworth is the most significant shakeup to the team’s roster. However, he’s not the only player who has faced injury-related issues at McDaniel College (or elsewhere) thus far. For this week’s edition; I am going to take not only Foxworth out of the 53, but also the players that we believe will begin the season on PUP (if not IR).

That means that Ed Reed, Lardarius Webb and Sergio Kindle will get the asterisk treatment outside the 53. They’re clearly amongst the top 53 players on the roster, but we just don’t know if they’ll be there when the Ravens line up to face the New York Jets on Monday Night Football come September 13.

Additionally, the roster reflects the subtractions of John Beck and Walt Harris and the additions of Doug Dutch, Chris Hawkins, Daniel Sanders and Devin Tyler.

Here’s a reminder of how I explained these rankings the first time I put them together…

“Ozzie Newsome, John Harbaugh and company will at least MOSTLY keep the 53 best players on the roster, I am going to try to identify the Top 53 players on the roster myself. It ISN’T a perfect science, and some of the players will have outside circumstances that will influence where they find themselves on the list. Similarly, the Ravens will make some decisions based on health, position needs, etc.

I’m putting “best overall players”, “most significant players”, and “position relevance” into my “Top 53″ rankings. This isn’t just a list of the 53 best players on the team. This is however a list-at this moment-of the 53 players I believe are most likely to make the roster.”

With that in mind, let’s take a look at how the roster shapes up…

(Edit from GMC: This keeps shaking. The Ravens apparently DIDN’T release Walt Harris, but instead placed him on IR. Okay…)

1. QB Joe Flacco
2. OT Michael Oher
3. WR Anquan Boldin
4. DT Haloti Ngata
5. LB Ray Lewis
6. RB Ray Rice
7. LB Terrell Suggs
8. LB Jarret Johnson
jj
9. WR Derrick Mason
10. OT Jared Gaither

Jarret Johnson rises a few spots in the Top 10 and looks more and more important to this team every day. Some of that has to do with Sergio Kindle‘s injury, but even more of that has to do with Jarret himself. His position is such a delicate combination of up and back, the only player I can think of who has played even similarly to him is Adalius Thomas. Jared Gaither also drops a few spots as his weight has to be considered an issue, but he’s still very important to this football team.

11. DE Trevor Pryce
12. G Ben Grubbs
13. DL Cory Redding
14. TE Todd Heap
15. OL Marshal Yanda
16. LB Jameel McClain
jmcclain
17. CB Fabian Washington
18. DT Terrence Cody
19. FB Le’Ron McClain
20. QB Marc Bulger

A couple of the guys in this group have been quick risers. Jameel McClain was never REALLY on the bubble to make the roster, but he wasn’t terribly far away from it. Within weeks, Jameel has joined the first team defense. He’s been taking the majority of snaps next to Ray Lewis inside, and the team hopes that he can be helpful in pressuring the quarterback with Sergio Kindle down.

Also rising is Fabian Washington-as Domonique Foxworth‘s injury leaves him the team’s top corner. Fabian joined Thyrl Nelson Tuesday on “The Mobtown Sports Beat” on AM1570 WNST to discuss the pressure of being the top corner. Check it out in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net if you missed it.

21. C Matt Birk
22. K Shayne Graham
23. S Dawan Landry
24. DT Kelly Gregg
kellygregg
25. WR Donte’ Stallworth
26. CB Chris Carr
27. S Tom Zbikowski
28. LB Tavares Gooden
29. OL Chris Chester
30. S Haruki Nakamura

There are a couple of folks in this group worth pointing out. Had Terrence Cody come into Camp and looked like a guy who would be ready to go immediately, Kelly Gregg may have ended up being someone who had to fight to preserve his roster spot. That no longer appears to be an issue.

Chris Carr just became a much more significant part of this roster, as it appears he will be a starting CB for at least the first 6 weeks of the season. That was never the plan for Chris. Hopefully it won’t hurt Greg Mattison‘s defense.

31. TE Ed Dickson
dickson
32. WR Mark Clayton
33. TE Dennis Pitta
34. P Sam Koch
35. LB Dannell Ellerbe
36. RB Willis McGahee
37. LB Brendon Ayanbadejo
38. QB Troy Smith
39. DE Paul Kruger
40. S Ken Hamlin

I don’t know how much longer I can keep Dickson and Pitta outside the Top 30. It might just be Training Camp, but both have looked very good early on. Also looking good is Clayton, who may have been at risk of finding the bubble before Camp started.

On the flip side, Dannell Ellerbe as of right now looks to be 4th amongst the team’s inside LB’s, after vaulting into a job as a starter just a season ago. Troy Smith also appears to have solidified himself a bit with John Beck gone.

41. LB Antwan Barnes
42. OT Oniel Cousins
43. LS Matt Katula
44. DT Brandon McKinney
45. DT Kelly Talavou
46. RB Jalen Parmele
47. WR David Reed
48. OL David Hale
49. CB Travis Fisher
50. DT Arthur Jones
51. CB Cary Williams
52. OL Tony Moll
53. LB Edgar Jones
jones

A few things worth mentioning in this group. I’ll move Edgar Jones (who of course now wears #48 and plays OLB after having played roughly every other position on the field) back onto the good side of the bubble, as the injury to Sergio Kindle leaves the team thin at OLB. A couple of the other guys in this group (namely David Reed and Arthur Jones) are getting the benefit of the doubt as draft picks, but probably still have something to prove to make the final 53.

(CB Domonique Foxworth-IR)
(CB Walt Harris-IR)
(S Ed Reed-Likely PUP)
(CB Lardarius Webb-Likely PUP)
(LB Sergio Kindle-Likely PUP or IR)

54. K Billy Cundiff
55. WR Demetrius Williams
56. OT Ramon Harewood
57. LB Prescott Burgess
58. RB Matt Lawrence
59. S KJ Gerard
gerard
60. LB Jason Phillips
61. TE Davon Drew
62. DT Lamar Divens
63. WR Marcus Smith
64. WR Justin Harper
65. DE Albert McClellan
66. FB Mike McLaughlin
67. WR Eron Riley
68. CB Prince Miller
69. CB Marcus Paschal
70. RB Curtis Steele

There’s a few things about my current 53 that I don’t like. As of right now, I have just 4 true corners on the roster right now (Washington, Carr, Williams, Fisher). This could be a place where Gerard could squeeze his way back onto the roster. Also, Ramon Harewood could be in direct competition with Tony Moll for an O-Line spot.

I said before Camp that there were 70 legitimate NFL players (either guys who had been on the active roster or guys who were NFL Draft picks) fighting for 53 roster spots. That number has dwindled, but there are still some 65 legitimate players fighting for spots-and 5 current or former UFA’s also hoping to get on the team.

71. OT Joe Reitz
joereitz
72. CB Doug Dutch
73. OL Bryan Mattison
74. OT Stefan Rodgers
75. LS Morgan Cox
76. CB Chris Hawkins
77. OT Daniel Sanders
78. OT Devin Tyler

The team certainly believes there will be some practice squad guys in the final group.

There you have it. We’ll update again after the Ravens play the Carolina Panthers Thursday night at M&T Bank Stadium.

-G

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Mocking The 53: A Training Camp Eve Look at Ravens Roster

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Mocking The 53: A Training Camp Eve Look at Ravens Roster

Posted on 25 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Back in early June, I put together my first “Mocking the 53” entry; breaking down how the Baltimore Ravens roster appeared following the end of mini-camps. Since that time, there have been some roster additions (welcome Marc Bulger, Ken Hamlin, Walt Harris); subtractions (we’ll never forget William VanDeSteeg, Brad Jones, Chris Hannon, Maurice Price, John Fletcher, Daniel Sanders, Courtney Smith, Ashton Hall and Digger Bujnoch); and “Ed Reed Month” has captured the attention of Charm City.

With coaches, quarterbacks, rookies and players coming off injuries scheduled to report to McDaniel College Monday, I thought today would be a good time to take another look at where the roster stands. There aren’t MANY changes; but it’s worth taking another look at.

Here’s how I explained these rankings the first time I posted them…

Ozzie Newsome, John Harbaugh and company will at least MOSTLY keep the 53 best players on the roster, I am going to try to identify the Top 53 players on the roster myself. It ISN’T a perfect science, and some of the players will have outside circumstances that will influence where they find themselves on the list. Similarly, the Ravens will make some decisions based on health, position needs, etc.

I’m putting “best overall players”, “most significant players”, and “position relevance” into my “Top 53″ rankings. This isn’t just a list of the 53 best players on the team. This is however a list-at this moment-of the 53 players I believe are most likely to make the roster.

1. QB Joe Flacco
2. OT Michael Oher
3. WR Anquan Boldin
4. DT Haloti Ngata
5. LB Ray Lewis
6. RB Ray Rice
7. WR Derrick Mason
8. LB Terrell Suggs
suggs

9. OT Jared Gaither
10. LB Jarret Johnson

I only made a few adjustments to the Top 10 this time around. After talking to some NFL personnel folks, I came to the conclusion that I slightly overvalued Ray Rice and slightly undervalued Ray Lewis. The fact is-the Ravens have great depth at RB behind Rice. While the team wouldn’t be as dynamic offensively without him; they could survive for at least a period of time should he get hurt. The team does NOT have the same type of depth at ILB, as they have SOLID players-just not guys who can step in for someone like #52. The other change I made in the Top 10 was at #10; as Jarret Johnson replaces Ed Reed. With the acquisition of Ken Hamlin and the very realistic possibility that Reed will miss the first six weeks of the season; it’s hard to leave even a future Hall of Fame safety in the Top 10.

11. S Ed Reed
12. DT Terrence Cody
13. OG Ben Grubbs
14. DE Trevor Pryce
15. DL Cory Redding
16. TE Todd Heap
17. CB Domonique Foxworth
domfox
18. C Matt Birk
19. OL Marshal Yanda
20. QB Marc Bulger

Welcome to the list Marc Bulger. The fact is, the team doesn’t give a player nearly $4 million (with the chance to make over $5 million) if he’s not an important part of the roster. No matter what Ed Reed or Joe Flacco says to the media, the team is obviously very happy to have the former St. Louis Rams QB on the roster. Otherwise, the next 10 stays about the same as my first post. One of the most interesting things to watch this week in Westminster will be the weight Terrence Cody reports at. If it is around the 350 the team wants from him, he’ll solidify his Top 12 standing on this roster. If it is more than that, his stock could drop.

21. FB Le’Ron McClain
22. S Dawan Landry
23. CB Lardarius Webb
webb
24. LB Sergio Kindle
25. LB Dannell Ellerbe
26. CB Fabian Washington
27. WR Donte’ Stallworth
28. K Shayne Graham
29. LB Tavares Gooden
30. DT Kelly Gregg

The biggest riser in this group is Shayne Graham, who was 41st on my initial list. In talking to folks both in Owings Mills and around the league; it has become clear that the team is working under the assumption that Graham will win the “competition” with Billy Cundiff. Should he struggle in the preseason, clearly his place on the list could fluctuate. Lardarius Webb dropped just a bit due to the acquisition of Walt Harris; as the team has a bit more depth at CB should Webb not return as healthy as hoped. Also dropping a few spots is rookie LB Sergio Kindle as we await more details surrounding his head injury that will force him to miss the start of Training Camp.

31. TE Ed Dickson
32. P Sam Koch
33. OL Chris Chester
34. CB Chris Carr
chriscarr
35. RB Willis McGahee
36. S Ken Hamlin
37. S Haruki Nakamura
38. S Tom Zbikowski
39. LB Jameel McClain
40. LB Brendon Ayanbadejo

Ken Hamlin debuts at #36, and could rise from there depending on how he looks in the preseason. As of right now, there is a common assumption that Hamlin could very well be the guy to start alongside Dawan Landry Week 1 in East Rutherford; as Ed Reed looks like he may well end up on the PUP list. Should Hamlin show the form that made him a Pro Bowl selection with the Dallas Cowboys, he should hold off Tom Zbikowski easily at the “centerfield” safety spot.

41. TE Dennis Pitta
42. CB Walt Harris
43. WR Mark Clayton
44. DE Paul Kruger
45. QB Troy Smith
troysmith
46. LS Matt Katula
47. OT Oniel Cousins
48. LB Antwan Barnes
49. RB Jalen Parmele
50. DT Brandon McKinney
51. WR David Reed
52. DT Kelly Talavou
53. OL David Hale

The guy that drops the most in this list is Troy Smith, as the acquisition of Marc Bulger leaves him 3rd on the QB Depth Chart. Should he be traded to a team that suffers a QB injury during the preseason; Cam Cameron favorite John Beck would take his roster spot right back. David Hale gets the last spot on the 53 due to the need for interior OL depth behind Chris Chester-although the team could well decide to keep Tony Moll for that role. They could also keep Ramon Harewood (who looks like a Practice Squad guy to me) if he was capable of moving in and playing guard.

54. QB John Beck
55. K Billy Cundiff
56. DT Arthur Jones
57. OT Ramon Harewood
58. WR Demetrius Williams
dwill
59. CB Travis Fisher
60. OL Tony Moll
61. LB Prescott Burgess
62. RB Matt Lawrence
63. LB Edgar Jones
64. LB Jason Phillips
65. CB Cary Williams
66. DT Lamar Divens
67. TE Davon Drew
68. WR Marcus Smith
69. WR Justin Harper
70. S KJ Gerard

This is really incredible. Players 54-70 on this list ALL appear to be legitimate NFL players; just guys who face VERY uphill battles when it comes to trying to make this crowded roster.

John Beck will have to beat Troy Smith or hope he’s traded. Billy Cundiff will have to beat Shayne Graham. Arthur Jones and Lamar Divens are battling Brandon McKinney and Kelly Talavou; with an outside chance that Kelly Gregg could be let go to pave the way for one of them to make the team.

Ramon Harewood and Tony Moll are battling Oniel Cousins and David Hale; but are also hoping to convince the team they’re valuable enough to just keep another O-Lineman altogether. Demetrius Williams, Marcus Smith and Justin Harper are all hoping to prove that their size makes them more valuable than David Reed or Mark Clayton; or that they’re valuable enough for John Harbaugh to go with a 6th receiver.

Travis Fisher, Cary Williams and KJ Gerard are battling the likes of Walt Harris to try to steal a spot in the secondary. One of them will likely benefit from Ed Reed‘s injury to get onto the roster. Prescott Burgess is hoping to avoid being a roster casualty for a 2nd straight year; as he, Jason Phillips and Edgar Jones know that Brendon Ayanbadejo, Antwan Barnes, Jameel McClain and Paul Kruger are their competition for making the roster.

Matt Lawrence has to prove he’s back from his knee injury a season ago and his value at RB and on Special Teams makes him worthwhile amongst a group that includes Jalen Parmele. Davon Drew is trying to find some room at TE behind Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta.

The fact is, these are all winnable jobs for the players farther down on the roster; and they’re not just competing with each other. A strong preseason from Demetrius Williams could earn him a spot but prove costly for a player like Brandon McKinney with the team deep at DT. A strong preseason from Matt Lawrence could leave Antwan Barnes an afterthought.

Jerry Rosburg will ultimately have a big say in who gets the final spots, as a player’s value to the Special Teams unit could outweigh his value at his own position. Lawrence, Smith, Burgess, E. Jones and Gerard could all use that to their advantage in trying to make the roster.

71. FB Mike McLaughlin
72. CB Prince Miller
73. CB Marcus Paschal
74.  OT Joe Reitz
75. WR Eron Riley
eron
76. RB Curtis Steele
77. OL Bryan Mattison
78. OT Stefan Rodgers
79. LS Morgan Cox
80. WR Rodelin Anthony
81. DE Albert McClellan

There are guys who have a chance at making the roster in this final group, but they have to be considered longshots. Eron Riley was popular amongst the members of the team’s coaching staff while on the practice squad last year. Unfortunately, the logjam of taller receivers fighting for roster spots ahead of him makes it likely he will end up heading right back to the practice squad this year.

Mike McLaughlin, Prince Miller and Curtis Steele are all UFA’s who have legitimate chances of lighting the world on fire in the preseason and winning jobs; but all appear more likely to be practice squad bound. Should Matt Katula show lingering signs of the elbow troubles that bothered him last year, Morgan Cox could have a chance to win the LS job outright.

That’s the roster as it stands right now. We all know injuries and other potential roster moves will change things before the Ravens head to the Meadowlands for Monday Night Football on Sept. 13. I’ll try to update this after each preseason game; with September 4 looming as “cutdown” day.

Remember, updates from Luke Jones and myself at Training Camp begin Monday; and can be heard at the bottom of the hour EVERY hour throughout the day.

-G

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 29 June 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because someone found a YouTube video of a guy holding an AK-47 and lip-syncing or singing a karaoke version of “Hello” by Lionel Richie. There’s absolutely no reason for me to enjoy this video, but yet I do…

I have no idea WHY I’d enjoy this video so much, but for some reason…yeah…this…this is just fine.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6pGBu6wYYkI[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The Sun’s Dan Connolly says Jason Berken, Ty Wigginton, Nick Markakis likely All-Star Game candidates for Orioles, Juan Samuel supports Adam Jones

And with that, congratulations to the Birds’ interim manager for winning his first ever “Apologist of the Morning” honor, as selected by “The Great Arbitrator” Drew Forrester. I’m well aware that Adam Jones is on an absolutely TORRID pace right now, but hitting well for a few weeks does not a season make. (How was that for poetry?)

Jones’ OBP is just .296. I know he’s hit 12 home runs this season, but he has just 8 walks. Those are NOT All-Star numbers. If the team had done anything before the last 5 days, I’d say he should be a candidate for American League Player of the Month; but getting hot quickly doesn’t qualify you to be an All-Star. Sorry Juan Samuel. Wigginton is in a similar boat. Hitting well to start the season and then falling off the face of the planet doesn’t qualify you as an All-Star either.

The reality is that if the player who has been the best for the O’s all season were to go to Anaheim, it would be Berken. He’s given up 8 earned runs all season, with just 12 walks and 32 strikeouts. He’s absolutely been fantastic. Does he have the pedigree of an All-Star? Of course not. But has he been the team’s “best” player this season from Opening Day until June 29th? I think there’s no doubt about that.

My choice to go to Angel Stadium remains Markakis. As far as someone who “belongs”, Markakis fits the bill. He’s been consistent throughout the season, although he clearly has lacked in the HR and RBI department. The fact remains that this team SHOULDN’T have an All-Star representative, but rules dictate that someone has to go. If someone has to go, I would certainly feel most comfortable with that player being Markakis.

2. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Garrett Atkins not interested in accepting AAA assignment to Norfolk

And as Drew stated so well via Twitter last night (follow us @WNST), the Tides reportedly responded by saying “Somehow, we’ll survive…”

In fairness, Norfolk already has a few Garrett Atkins’ on their roster in Nolan Reimold and Brandon Snyder. I’m not sure that this organization really needs another Garrett Atkins around. It just didn’t work here. For all parties involved (especially one Andy MacPhail), it’s probably best that the sides part ways cleanly.

As a note, I saw the Sun report that Brady Anderson is working with Nolan Reimold. I don’t know that it will make Nolan Reimold a major league baseball player again this season; but I certainly see no reason why it wouldn’t be a good idea. Having the likes of Brady Anderson, BJ Surhoff, Mike Bordick, etc. around is a perfectly good idea in my eyes.

3. The AP/STATS’ Mike Lipka previews O’s-A’s series starting tonight at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

First pitch tonight at OPACY is at 7:05pm, with Dallas Braden facing Brian Matusz. If you’re like me and not really interested in dealing with the heat; you can check the game out on MASN2. As Drew and I discussed this morning; the amazing thing here is that despite the fact that we’ve already seen Oakland 6 times this season-I still can’t name more than 5 or 6 position players off the top of my head.

Rajai Davis can ground out into a triple, I know him. Kevin Kouzmanoff has as many letters in his last name as he does significant hits in his career. Daric Barton is the only human being on the face of the planet with the name Daric. Kurt Suzuki is a worse option to hit cleanup than anyone Baltimore has trotted out this season. I’m pretty sure they have a Sweeney as well…Ryan Sweeney if I remember right.

That’s all I can think of off the top of my head. Is Mark Ellis still on the roster? I know Eric Chavez got hurt, I used to be able to name him. I know the A’s pitchers have been pretty good this season. But in reality, the Birds still have a realistic shot at winning a few more games this week.

Of course, I’ve found myself thinking that before.

4. Virginian-Pilot says Chris George rocked in Tides’ loss to Louisville Monday night on farm

You know what else got rocked? MY MIND when I heard WWTDD had pictures of Kelly Brook from her vacation…

kellybrook

5. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Ravens 6th round pick (Morehouse State OT) Ramon Harewood agreed to 3 year deal

This now leaves the Ravens with more SIGNED picks (Harewood, Dennis Pitta, Arthur Jones and David Reed) than they do UNSIGNED (Sergio Kindle, Terrence Cody, Ed Dickson). Nothing surprising here; as I’ve stated before that there’s no reason to think the team will have any trouble getting their picks signed this year.

As far as where Harewood fits in with the Ravens; he’s going to have an uphill climb to be on the roster Week 1 when the Ravens face the New York Jets on Monday Night Football. Michael Oher and Jared Gaither (who I’ve said before is expected to be on the roster come Week 1) are entrenched at the starting tackle positions. Behind them, Oniel Cousins has shown himself to be the #3 guy. Marshal Yanda’s flexibility kept Tony Moll from dressing much last season, but he was on the roster all season after being acquired from Green Bay.

The simple answer would for me to say that Harewood is competing with Moll for a roster spot. That’s not entirely true. Moll has some ability to go inside, which makes him more valuable on Cam Cameron’s offense-even if his natural ability isn’t at the same level as some others on the roster. Harewood is also going to be coming off a knee injury suffered in minicamp when he reports to Westminster. There is ABSOLUTELY a chance that the team could try to store him on IR or the practice squad.

Stefan Rodgers and Joe Reitz are also options at Tackle, and Harewood would have to stay ahead of them to have a shot at making the 53 out of Training Camp. I had him JUST off the bubble on my initial mock roster, I doubt that will change as we get closer to reporting to McDaniel College.

6. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says Greg Mattison thinks Tom Zbikowski playing like Ed Reed

And there isn’t much of anyone better in the world for Zbikowski to model himself after. Similarly, I try to get my girlfriend (you may be familiar with her-”The Luckiest Dang Gal on the Face of the Planet”), to try to be more and more like Mallilany Malin (Thanks Guyism!)…

malin

7. Yahoo! Sports’ Jason Cole says Ravens have 2nd best D-Line in NFL

With the Minnesota Vikings at Number 1, I can’t possibly argue with either of the rankings. Clearly the line with Kevin Williams, Pat Williams and Jared Allen HAS to be considered the best in the National Football League; but the Ravens have built something that deserves recognition as well.

Clearly the Ravens’ D-Line is anchored inside out; with the likes of Haloti Ngata, Terrence Cody and Kelly Gregg holding down the middle. The depth the team has built inside with the likes of Kelly Talavou, Brandon McKinney, Arthur Jones and Lamar Divens behind that.

The reason the Ravens couldn’t really even be CONSIDERED ahead of the Vikes is the lack of a true premier rush end. There was a time that Trevor Pryce WAS that guy, but he isn’t anymore. The team believes that Pryce and Cory Redding can combine to anchor the position moving forward; and I don’t doubt that they can. There’s still a hope that Paul Kruger can develop into a true rush end; but obviously he isn’t there yet.

8. UMTerps.com says Randy Eaton named interim Athletic Director at Maryland

Which is a MUCH too logical decision for the University to make. Eaton has been VERY involved with the program in the role of CFO in recent years, and has been hands on in important decisions with finances, scheduling and personnel. There is no question that if there is someone on staff who at least deserves CONSIDERATION for the job permanently, it would be Eaton.

If you’re interested, Eaton will join Drew Forrester tomorrow morning at 9:00am to talk about his new role. I think Eaton will do a great job in the role, which he could have to fill for some time. With no timetable to complete the search to replace C.D. Mote as University President, the search to find a new Athletic Director could certainly extend into the academic year.

9. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Debbie Yow will make basically same salary at NC State as she did in College Park

If you missed Debbie Yow’s appearance this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST, it is absolutely worth the listen. You can head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net now to check it out.

Maryland soccer coach Sasho Cirvoski joined the show to go around the World Cup, and Washington Capitals GM George McPhee recapped the NHL Entry Draft as well. It’s all there in the Audio Vault if you want to check it out.

Also, the new weekly episode of the “D1scast” with myself and Patrick Stevens is also available now in the Audio Vault. We talk at length about Debbie Yow, Randy Eaton, Greivis Vasquez, the NBA Draft, and the great 4th of July scene in “The Sandlot.” It’s must listen…if you must.

10. Inside Lacrosse’s Terry Foy says former Terrapins lacrosse coach Dave Cottle has interviewed at Harvard

I have no idea if Cottle would be a good fit in the Ivy League. Regionally, he has no coaching experience in New England-but he IS a hell of a coach.

As sad as he was to leave his players, do you get the feeling Dave Cottle felt WORSE about leaving when he found out that the girls in the Undie Run were hanging out with Testudo???

undierun

And finally, I leave you with this.

If you haven’t picked up Drake’s new disc “Thank Me Later”, I suggest you do. I’m FEELING “Miss Me”, even if I’d fight Drake over his desire to marry Nicki Minaj…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=84N0xXE_WjM[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 22 June 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because it’s about time for another “Greatest Song of All Time This Week.” With Robert Randolph & The Family Band’s new disc “We Walk This Road” hitting iTunes yesterday; I’m going to pick “Traveling Shoes”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HVHNgOb1Je4[/youtube]

If you don’t love Robert Randolph; you and I might not be capable of being friends.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP/STATS’ Anthony Giornalista previews Orioles-Marlins series opening tonight at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

With no offense to baseball fans anywhere in Miami or elsewhere in Florida, there’s nothing imposing about the Marlins. Other than Josh Johnson that is-and he doesn’t pitch in this series. Well, the Dan Uggla-Hanley Ramirez combo is pretty good. And Jorge Cantu, Ronny Paulino, Cody Ross and Chris Coghlan have been solid. And Mike Stanton looks like he’ll be pretty good in the future.

Okay, fine. The Fish are actually a half decent team, despite the fact that they are currently 3 games under .500. They just don’t SEEM that imposing at first blush. However, when you’re the worst team in Major League Baseball (and the Orioles are by a LONGSHOT), all opponents are fairly imposing.

They kick the series off tonight at OPACY, with Jeremy Guthrie facing Anibal Sanchez. First pitch is on MASN2 at 7:05pm. I’ll say Orioles win. Not because I really have a good feeling about whether or not the Orioles will win, but more because I’d just really rather not having to talk about a 19-51 team. Or a 19-52 team. Or a 19-55 team. Or a 19-90 team. You get the point.

2. WNST.net’s Ryan Chell says Birds trying to avoid historic failure of 1962 New York Mets

What was the New York Mets’ record through 69 games in 1962?

19-50.

Unless this team plays really good baseball for some stretch of time this season (which I GUESS is possible?), we’re going to be discussing this right up until win number 41. If we get past that, we’ll be talking about it until (if?) they surpass the 54 wins posted by the 1988 Baltimore Orioles-the worst team in franchise history.

Yep, it’s an exciting time! Head on down to Birdland tonight and welcome home the Orioles! You never know what might happen! For example, the Orioles could be the first time to strike out 4 times in 1 inning in one game! If it happens and you’re not that, you’re really going to beat yourself up!

3. ESPN.com’s Tristan Cockroft names Matt Wieters to ‘All-2014 Team’

Well….I hope so….

With no offense to Matt Wieters (or our friends at MattWietersFacts.com), ummm….this is still a bit of a leap of faith. I still think Matt Wieters is going to turn out to be a good player, but maybe the immediate comparisons to Joe Mauer were a bit unfair.

It’s not that I’m clamoring for Wieters to be sent back down to Norfolk or anything like that. I’m NOT. He’s been very good defensively and poor offensively. He’s on a poor offensive team. I’m just trying to keep my expectations a bit more realistic. Like, instead of thinking Matt Wieters is going to be the next CJ Gibson (Thanks Busted Coverage/Next Round!)…

cjgibson

…I’m now just hoping he’ll be the next Luisa Corna. (Thanks AGAIN Busted Coverage and Plunder Guide!)…

luisacorna

…You see the difference, right? Right?

4. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Bergesen solid, Felix Pie struggled for O’s on farm Monday night

And before we move on from the Orioles, a couple of things.

-With Felix Pie now rehabbing, there has been some conjecture about what the Orioles will do roster-wise to make room for him. I can’t honestly believe anyone thinks there is another option (I’ve read a few comments about Corey Patterson) than Lou Montanez, but I guess some folks down don’t think it’s such a slam dunk. Montanez HAS to be the guy. I’m sure Andy MacPhail will give Juan Samuel (or whoever is managing the team at the time) the edict that Pie HAS to play everyday-which will make a lot of people not named Glenn Clark pleased. Glenn Clark will remain in the Dave Trembley camp of “I think you should play….just as soon as you stop routinely screwing up.”

-As far as Edwin Encarnacion is concerned, put him on the Jake Fox list of “whatever.” If the team gets rid of Garrett Atkins, someone has to play first base. Neither of these guys are any good. But the Orioles are full of players like that. In fact, they have so many that one of them (Ty Wigginton) has managed to confuse some folks into thinking he IS a good player. If the Orioles add Edwin Encarnacion to the roster, “whatever.”

-Congratulations to our “Apologist of the Morning”, as selected by “The Great Arbitrator” Drew Forrester. I don’t know who Noah Rosenstein is or what his role is with MLB.com, but with headlines like “Talent overflowing at Double A Bowie” and “Few hurdles left for (Zach) Britton before joining O’s”, I couldn’t help but think to myself “Gee, Yankees.com doesn’t have any Double A stories posted today…”

5. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Ravens agreed to 3 year deal with 5th round pick (Syracuse) DT Arthur Jones

While Arthur Jones is probably breathing a BIT easier today, he still has to go up to Westminster and make sure he actually makes the team. The roster is chocked full of D-Linemen (Trevor Pryce, Cory Redding, Kelly Gregg, Terrence Cody, Haloti Ngata, Kelly Talavou, Brandon McKinney, Paul Kruger, Lamar Divens, Jones and Albert McClellan), and he’s going to have to make sure he locks down a spot during Training Camp.

As I said when I mocked the roster a few weeks back, I truly believe Arthur Jones WILL make the roster. I know that he has a big fan in John Harbaugh, and I know that he “looks like a Raven” the way Talavou and McKinney did a season ago. That will help him, but he has to do the rest at McDaniel College.

6. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Ravens reached 3 year deal with 4th round pick (BYU) TE Dennis Pitta

Dennis Pitta likely feels much more comfortable than Arthur Jones today, but 4th round picks have been left off NFL rosters before. He appears to have a clear path to make the roster behind Todd Heap (and probably behind 3rd round pick Ed Dickson), but 2nd year TE Davon Drew is in the mix as well.

It’s safe to assume he’ll be the team’s #3 Tight End (with a chance to be the #2 guy). Pitta absolutely reminds you of Todd Heap OFF the field, and has some similarities on the field as well. The biggest thing Cam Cameron hopes he and Dickson will bring is the chance to allow Heap to rest a bit more next season; as the team believes Heap may have played upwards of 1,000 snaps.

Before we move on from the Ravens, a reminder that new Ravens safety Ken Hamlin joined Rex Snider Monday afternoon on the “Rex and Ray” show. If you missed it, make sure you head on over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault and check it out today.

7. The Sun’s Mike Preston says former Ravens LS Joe Maese now working as firefighter in Howard County

This is a REALLY cool story that’s worth checking out. Joe Maese was a popular guy in Owings Mills, and it is VERY cool to see that he’s doing good work for the folks at the Long Reach station.

I don’t really have any other “analysis” to offer here about Joe. It’s just a really cool story that’s worth the read today. You know what else is a really cool story? Lily Cole on the cover of Arena Magazine (Thanks Barstool Sports!)…

lilycole

8. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terrapins LB Alex Wujciak named to Watch List for Bronco Nagurski Award

There’s no hiding the fact that Wujciak is probably the Terps’ best player, and will have high expectations on a defense that will need to play well again this season for Ralph Friedgen’s team to have any success in the ACC. Don Brown knows what to expect from his LB’s, which is good-because there aren’t a whole heck of a lot of other positions on the team that the coaches are feeling quite so comfortable with.

If you’re Jonesing for some Maryland football talk, Patrick (follow him on Twitter @D1scourse) and I posted the second edition of the “D1scast” yesterday. Head back over to the Audio Vault to check it out. We preview Maryland’s special teams unit, recap the lack of movement in conference realignment, discuss the departure of Javarie Johnson at Maryland and Mike Hermann at Towson, and even bring up the great “Batman Returns.” There’s also a look at the college lacrosse coaching carousel. Speaking of which…

9. Washington Post’s Christian Swezey says Ryan Moran, Kevin Warne expected to join John Tillman’s lacrosse staff in College Park

I would first like to take the time to welcome both coaches to College Park, and wish them the best of success in their Maryland tenure.

I would then like to just ask…was there no room for Maxim Italy cover girl Melissa Satta on the staff??? (Thanks Guyism!)…

italy

10. Orlando Sentinel’s Josh Robbins says former Maryland guard Greivis Vasquez worked out with Magic Monday

I know I’m not the first person to say this, but this would be an unacceptable destination for the senior from Venezuela to end up in the NBA Draft. Orlando is where JJ Redick plays. I don’t much care for JJ Redick. I don’t much care for anything related to Duke. In fact-as I said on Twitter (follow us @WNST) after seeing photos of the RimRock Auto Arena in Montana destroyed by a tornado…

rimrock

…the only thing I could think to myself was “Dear God, why this place instead of Cameron Indoor Stadium?”

Eric Hayes recently worked out with the Chicago Bulls, he joined Drew today on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST. If you missed it, head on over to the Audio Vault and check it out. Other guests this morning included…

-IndyCar Series CEO Randy Bernard, who gave us all of the details for next year’s “Baltimore Grand Prix” downtown.
-Fox Sports Florida Pre-Game host Craig Minervini, who previewed the Orioles-Marlins series
-Loyola soccer coach Mark Mettrick, who went around the World Cup

It’s all in the Audio Vault, make sure you check it out!

And finally, I leave you with this.

After his big plug during ABC’s NBA Finals postgame show from the floor of the Staples Center in Los Angeles, I’m sure everyone was waiting for the debut of LA Lakers star Ron Artest’s new single “Champions.” No? Screw you guys, I don’t have anything else prepared. (Thanks Deadspin!)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRrN4pmEuQA[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Mocking The 53: A Look at Ravens Player Power Rankings

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Mocking The 53: A Look at Ravens Player Power Rankings

Posted on 06 June 2010 by Glenn Clark

This is going to be the first in a series I will do through Training Camp and on to Week 1 of the NFL season as we try to identify the 53 players who will make up the roster when the Baltimore Ravens face the New York Jets on Monday Night Football.

As Ozzie Newsome, John Harbaugh and company will at least MOSTLY keep the 53 best players on the roster, I am going to try to identify the Top 53 players on the roster myself. It ISN’T a perfect science, and some of the players will have outside circumstances that will influence where they find themselves on the list. Similarly, the Ravens will make some decisions based on health, position needs, etc.

I’m putting “best overall players”, “most significant players”, and “position relevance” into my “Top 53″ rankings. This isn’t just a list of the 53 best players on the team. This is however a list-at this moment-of the 53 players I believe are most likely to make the roster.

Here goes…

1. QB Joe Flacco (Do I even need to bother to explain?)
2. OT Michael Oher (Now at LT, Oher has moved into the “most important players on the team” category.)
3. RB Ray Rice (The team MVP from a season ago, Rice’s value is incredible despite the depth at the position. The Ravens are MUCH better offensively with Ray Rice than without him.)
4. WR Anquan Boldin (Everything about the football team changes with Boldin on the field. If this offense is going to be more dynamic this season, it’s going to happen because of what Boldin does to open things up.)

boldin

5. DT Haloti Ngata (It might be blasphemy to some, but Haloti Ngata is the most important defensive player on the roster. Everything they do defensively starts up front with Ngata.)
6. WR Derrick Mason (The team needs Mason to compliment Boldin if this offense is going to be explosive this season. He’s still one of the most important players on the roster.)
7. LB Ray Lewis (He’s no longer THE most important defensive player on the team, but he’s still one of the more important defensive players in the NFL. The drop from #52 to Gooden/Barnes/McClain is significant.)
8. LB Terrell Suggs (Despite his poor 2009, the Ravens maintain high expectations for T-Sizzle in 2010. There’s a question of whether or not he’ll live up to them, but there’s no doubt they exist.)
9. OT Jared Gaither (He might not be the team’s LT any longer, but he’s still a VERY significant part of this team. The Ravens want to have Gaither and Oher as bookend tackles, as they believe it’s part of what makes their team great. Should a team float out a ridiculous trade offer for Gaither at some point I don’t think the Ravens would just dismiss it, but they very much want him to be on the field in New Jersey on Sept. 13.)
10. S Ed Reed (Technically, Ed has still not informed the team that he will return-and should he struggle to regain form after an offseason hip procedure, there’s a chance he might not. But Reed’s plan is to return, and if he does-he’s still a possible future Hall of Fame safety. He’s one of the Top 10 players on the team.)
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11. LB Jarret Johnson (Jarret was the team’s best defensive player a season ago, but his significance on the roster lessened when the team drafted Sergio Kindle behind him. I’d still expect him to have a Pro Bowl season, but his arguable Top 10 ability is currently greater than his actual roster value.)
12. DT Terrence Cody (Yep, that’s awfully high. But make no mistake about it, the Ravens have high expectations for Terrence Cody. Terrence Cody may be behind Kelly Gregg on the depth chart right now, but I wouldn’t expect that to last through Training Camp. He’s a mountain of a man, and is MUCH quicker than you’d realize. The more you see him on the field, the more you’ll wonder how 56 picks were made in the NFL Draft before he came off the board.)
13. OG Ben Grubbs (Grubbs arguably played at a Pro Bowl level a season ago as well, and the organization has been thrilled with him ever since they drafted him out of Auburn in 2007. If he was a tackle, he might be in the Top 5.)
14. DE Trevor Pryce (Despite the fact that he’s kind of only a “half” starter-and sometimes not a starter at all-Pryce has a major role on this team. In passing situations, the Ravens need the pressure Pryce can provide. That being said, the paycut Pryce took this offseason does indeed partially represent how his role has changed.)
15. DL Cory Redding (If Pryce is 14, Redding sorta has to be 15. They’ll be sharing an end position this year, similar to how Pryce and Dwan Edwards shared the position a season ago.)
16. TE Todd Heap (It would be easy to assume that with the Ravens selecting two Tight Ends in the NFL Draft, Todd Heap might be falling out of favor with the team. However, the team thought Heap played FAR too many snaps last season-insert your own LJ Smith joke here-and they wanted to help Heap out. The team also expects the middle of the field to be opened up for Heap thanks to the presence of Anquan Boldin.)
17. CB Domonique Foxworth (He’s the top CB on the roster, but not amongst the top CB’s in the AFC. Foxworth played MUCH better at the end of the season last year, and given the question marks the team has at the position-they could really use a similar performance this year.)
18. C Matt Birk (Not really much to say here. He’s a very important part of the offensive line, and it would be a significant dropoff for the team to have to turn to Chris Chester should he get hurt. His role is important, and he played very well a season ago.)
19. LB Sergio Kindle (The Ravens didn’t use their first pick in the NFL Draft on Kindle by accident. He’s learning a difficult position-as he was a more natural pass rusher at Texas than he will be asked to be in the NFL. Don’t be surprised if Kindle’s impact his rookie season isn’t as profound as you might want from the first player a team selects, but he’s definitely a phenomenal talent.)

sergio

20. OG Marshal Yanda (He’s going to be the starting RG for the team, and in the unlikely situation that Jared Gaither WERE to be traded, he’d probably get the shot to start at RT. His job is plenty safe.)
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21. FB Le’Ron McClain (Le’Ron’s recent Twitter campaign might not make him a true RB, but he’s going to get touches both in short yardage situations and late in games, there’s no doubt about that. Le’Ron’s role is very important to this team, and his ability to take a beating will make a major difference in how successful Ray Rice can be after 2,000+ yards of offense a season ago.)
22. CB Lardarius Webb (There’s a level of uncertainty here surrounding how he’ll bounce back in Training Camp from his ACL injury a season ago, but if he’s healthy-he’ll have a chance to start opposite Domonique Foxworth at CB. If he gets back for the bulk of Training Camp, he’s likely be in the mix again at KR as well.)
23. S Dawan Landry (If you’re a starter on defense, your job is safe. Dawan Landry is a starter on defense. His long-term status with the team might be in question, but he’s going to be here. The only sweating Landry will do in Westminster this summer will be due to the weather.)
24. LB Dannell Ellerbe (Dannell Ellerbe is CLEARLY the best of the ILB’s on this roster behind Ray Lewis, but I don’t think his working with the 2nd team at a recent Passing Camp is as easy to dismiss as John Harbaugh wanted it to be. Ellerbe’s attitude and personality are what left him undrafted out of Georgia to begin with. Those questions haven’t gone away since he made the team out of Training Camp a season ago. They love Ellerbe’s ability, but they want him to have a better attitude to boot. He’ll be one to watch at McDaniel College this summer.)
25. CB Fabian Washington (If I’m guessing, Fabian Washington will be starting opposite Domonique Foxworth at the Meadowlands September 13th. He’s also coming off a knee injury, but appears to be a bit closer to returning than Webb. His spot is safe, even though most Ravens fans would like some more quality depth at CB given the receivers they’ll go up against in the AFC North.)
26. WR Donte’ Stallworth (We know this much, Donte’ Stallworth is fast. Judging by what we’ve seen from him in OTA’s, we know he can still catch-at least when he’s not heavily defended. He’s going to be 3rd on the WR depth chart, and won’t have any trouble making it to the final 53. The only real questions surrounding Stallworth have more to do with whether or not he’ll be the 3rd WR when John Harbaugh’s team battles Rex Ryan’s squad.)
donte

27. DT Kelly Gregg (Kelly Gregg remains a fan favorite around Baltimore, but I’m not sure he has a long-term role with this team. I would be stunned if we make it 4 weeks into the season before Terrence Cody is considered a “starter” while Gregg works from the bench. The team is VERY deep with DT’s, and Gregg could end up being the odd man out sooner than later. I think he makes the team, but it looks like someone is going to have to be a casualty amongst the group.)
28. TE Ed Dickson (Dickson is currently ahead of Dennis Pitta and behind Todd Heap on the TE depth chart, and the Ravens are expecting much more from him than they have from backup TE’s in years past. Dickson has looked solid thus far in the offseason, and clearly will have no trouble making the roster for the fall.)
29. OL Chris Chester (Chester had the best season of his career in 2009, but still is a bit of a question mark on this Ravens’ roster. He won’t have trouble cracking the 53, but his role is a bit of a question mark. He’ll be the primary backup at guard, but looks like he’s out of the mix at center for the future. He’s part of the 53, but may not be part of the long-term plan.)
30. LB Tavares Gooden (If Greg Mattison IS toying with whether or not Dannell Ellerbe will start for this team, no single player on the roster would stand to benefit more than Gooden. Gooden inherited the starting job going into the 2009 season, but a concussion/injury plagued career has prohibited him from fully living up to the promise he showed coming out of Miami. He’s still a valuable part of the team, and won’t have any trouble making the roster.)
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31. CB Chris Carr (Carr is especially important to the team right now considering the injuries Washington and Webb and coming off of. He’s also the incumbent punt returner, although he wasn’t particularly overwhelming in the role a season ago. The team loves the veteran presence he gives them in the secondary and the locker room, and he’ll certainly have an important role on the team moving forward.)
32. P Sam Koch (Perhaps the most unfortunate thing about Sam Koch is that like many punters this team has employed before him-Dave Zastudil, Kyle Richardson and Gregg Montgomery-the team doesn’t appear inclined to pay him real money to keep him around long term. Koch had another very good season a year ago, and he’ll be expected to have a similarly solid campaign this season.)
33. QB Troy Smith (A recent Sun story quoted Cam Cameron as saying John Beck had the chance to supplant Troy Smith as the team’s backup QB-but it doesn’t mean the two are involved in any sort of open competition. Smith is the #2 QB unless he has a terrible summer while Beck excels, and the team still would like to use him in other ways. His future with the team is always in question, but clearly no other NFL teams-especially the Browns-was too particularly interested in obtaining him in the offseason.)
34. RB Willis McGahee (It is REALLY difficult to figure out what type of role Willis McGahee will have with this team. It looked a season ago as if he had improved his attitude and was on his way to re-establishing himself in the Ravens offense. And even late in the season against the Raiders and Patriots, he showed that he can still be a valuable contributor. That being said, he looked disinterested off the field, and again chose to skip offseason activities. I assume he’s on the 53, but it wouldn’t surprise me if the end of the road was coming soon.)
35. S Haruki Nakamura (Now healthy, Haruki is safely part of the roster. He has a role both defensively behind Ed Reed and Dawan Landry; and as a valued part of the team’s Special Teams unit. He’ll sleep comfortably during Training Camp-or at least as comfortably as you can sleep at a Best Western.)
36. S Tom Zbikowski (I almost just want to write “ditto” here, as the things said about Haruki Nakamura can also be said about Tom Zbikowski. He has a role, and he’s on the team. Next question.)
37. TE Dennis Pitta (I guess there’s a chance that if Davon Drew were to have an exceptional Training Camp and Pitta were to struggle the roster could change; but there’s no reason to think that will happen. The Ravens went out and got both Dickson and Pitta because they wanted both players to be part of the offense moving forward.)
pitta
(Image courtesy of SB Nation)

38. LB Brendon Ayanbadejo (If there’s a vet who MIGHT be a bit concerned about their spot on the roster, it could well be Ayanbadejo. He’s been a great contributor to the team via special teams, and was having his best season as a defender before getting hurt last season. But the Ravens are particularly deep at ILB, and a number of those players can also contribute on Special Teams. It looks like Ayanbadejo is safe, but it isn’t a guarantee.)
39. LB Jameel McClain (Jameel McClain is exactly the type of player I was referring to in the previous post. The Ravens have been happy with McClain since they got him undrafted out of Syracuse, but he hasn’t cracked into “safe” territory yet. It’s safe to assume he’ll be part of the 53 as long as he stays steady.)
40. RB Jalen Parmele (Parmele made himself more valuable with a steady performance as KR after Lardarius Webb was hurt last season. That’s important, considering the Ravens’ tremendous depth in the backfield. Parmele is the player that would stand to benefit most should the Ravens somehow end up parting ways with Willis McGahee. Parmele also gives them valuable depth should there be an injury to a top back.)
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41. K Shayne Graham (He’s finally on the roster, now he just has to win the job. Graham appears to have a “leg up” in his competition with Billy Cundiff for the kicker job. However, it cannot be forgotten that there is a reason the Bengals parted ways with Graham, especially after his two big misses in a Wild Card playoff loss in Cincinnati. There’s going to be a kicker on the roster, and I’d say there’s a 60 percent chance it’s Graham.)

graham
(Image courtesy of SB Nation)

42. QB John Beck (John Beck is going to make this team, as the Ravens are going to carry 3 quarterbacks. Hopefully, he won’t take a single snap all season, unless the team decides to use him from victory formation.)
43. OT Oniel Cousins (The team needs depth at OT, and while Oniel Cousins might not provide particularly QUALITY depth, he does provide depth. He’ll have the chance to move up this list in Training Camp.)
44. LS Matt Katula (This is very simple. Much like the competition for the kicking job, there is a competition for the long snapping job. Katula has about a 75 percent chance of winning the job over rookie Morgan Cox, but will have to show that he’s 100 percent after being plagued by elbow issues and ready to bounce back from a brutal 2009 campaign.)
45. WR Mark Clayton (I don’t think Clayton’s job is QUITE as safe as some others might think, but I certainly assume he’ll be on the team. Clayton has never seen this many capable receivers around him, and he has to make an impact despite coming off an offseason shoulder procedure. I assume he’s on the team, but it is no guarantee.)
46. DE Paul Kruger (This is an interesting situation. The Ravens maintained that they weren’t unhappy with Kruger during his rookie campaign despite the fact that he didn’t play much and contributed less than that. It’s hard to imagine a 2nd round pick being a question mark to make the roster just a year later, but you can’t ignore the number of scratches he had a season ago. He’s bulked up and is expected to be more of a natural pass rusher this season; but there are a number of D-Linemen in front of him. He’ll need to show that he can get to the quarterback, or the number of questions will continue to grow.)
47. DT Brandon McKinney (When Brandon McKinney made the roster last season, he truly LOOKED “like a Raven.” He still does, but is coming off back surgery and plays a position where the team has significant depth. He’s no guarantee to make the roster, but he’s exactly the type of player the Ravens want around.)
48. LB Antwan Barnes (Barnes is part of a deep group at LB, but the team has remained high on him despite some goofy antics at times. That being said, Barnes was an inactive a few times down the stretch last season, so his margin for error is small.)
49. DT Arthur Jones (I can tell you this much. John Harbaugh really is a big fan of Arthur Jones. That being said, it’s a very deep position-and the team might not be able to keep everyone. Arthur Jones is exactly the type of player the team loves, so I get the feeling he’ll stay on the good side of the roster bubble.)
50. OL David Hale (David Hale gives the team depth at interior lineman, but it isn’t particularly quality depth. Should Matt Birk get hurt, it is still more likely that Chris Chester would play center over an extended period of time, but Hale gives them much needed flexibility.)
51. DT Kelly Talavou (I have a funny feeling Talavou could end up being this year’s version of Derrick Martin. Martin-as you’ll remember-was behind a glut of cornerbacks on the roster a season ago at the end of Training Camp, and was traded to the Green Bay Packers for Tony Moll despite being a player the Ravens really liked. Talavou and McKinney are both candidates to be traded after Training Camp, but McKinney’s back injury could make Talavou more valuable on the market.)
52. CB Travis Fisher (The injuries bothering Lardarius Webb and Fabian Washington make Travis Fisher more valuable every day. He’s a veteran corner-having played in Seattle, Detroit and St. Louis before now. Even if Webb and Washington are healthy, he could still make the roster to give the team CB depth considering some of the troubles they had defending the pass a season ago. Fisher isn’t Darrelle Revis, but most Ravens fans only care that he isn’t Frank Walker either.)
53. WR David Reed (This is a tough call. David Reed will probably end up in the return mix, as he’s more explosive than Jalen Parmele or Chris Carr, and he’s healthier than Lardarius Webb. Reed might not have much of a role at WR, but Jerry Rosburg has to want his returners to be a little bit more of a threat to break one back. I’ll give Reed the benefit of the doubt when it comes to making the team, but he’ll have an uphill battle.)
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54. OT Ramon Harewood (The rookie from Morehouse State misses the cut on my first list mostly because he hasn’t had a chance to prove himself yet. A knee injury has caused him to miss the bulk of the offseason work thus far, and he’ll have to show that he’s more than just a project in Training Camp to make sure he ends up on the roster. The Ravens could try to stash him away on IR.)
55. WR Demetrius Williams (This may or may not correct itself before the start of the regular season. Perhaps no player on the roster is facing a more crucial summer than Williams, as he been making the roster based on size alone for the better part of his career. The Ravens may be forced to fish or cut bait with Williams, as they have too many receivers to keep one around whose only ability thus far in his career has been an ability to…sometimes…draw pass interference flags.)
56. K Billy Cundiff (Billy Cundiff clearly has the most simple road to the roster, as he just has to beat out Shayne Graham for the job. Most of us assumed Graham Gano would beat out Steve Hauschka for the job last summer, but it didn’t work out that way. I’m assuming Graham gets the gig, but certainly Cundiff will have the chance.)
57. OT Tony Moll (Tony Moll offers the team a player who can play both Guard and Tackle, but there’s no real place for him on the roster. This may come down to the team keeping either him or Harewood, and a healthy Harewood appears to offer the team a bit more than Moll does.)
58. LB Prescott Burgess (Not everyone in the LB mix can make the team. With depth from Antwan Barnes, Jameel McClain, Tavares Gooden, Sergio Kindle, Brendon Ayanbadejo and maybe even from Paul Kruger; there’s no way the team can keep everyone at the position. Burgess was a roster casualty a season ago, but the Ravens were able to re-acquire him after trading him to the New England Patriots.)
59. RB Matt Lawrence (The team REALLY likes Matt Lawrence, especially what he has to offer on Special Teams. Lawrence made the roster a season ago as the team kept 5 backs, but there’s no guarantee they’ll keep that many this season. He can very well make the team, but it won’t be easy-especially as he returns from a knee injury.)
60. LB Edgar Jones (It is REALLY tough to figure out what the Ravens plan to do with Edgar Jones this season. He’s managed to remain employed while switching from LB to TE to LB to TE to FB to LB to….I thought they might even give him a shot at the kicking competition this summer. Clearly the organization likes him, and OLB is a better spot to try to make the roster than ILB, I just don’t see a role for him right now.)
61. LB Jason Phillips (See Burgess, Prescott. The team was able to stash Jason Phillips away on IR last season, but likely won’t be able to do the same this year. He’ll have an uphill climb to make the roster, as the Ravens don’t lack depth at the position.)
62. FB Mike McLaughlin (McLaughlin has a real chance to make this roster as well. The undrafted rookie from Boston College hasn’t played fullback since high school, but if he can adapt to it, the team could keep him on to create a jumbo backfield along with Le’Ron McClain. He’ll also need to show that he can step in and play Special Teams, which his background as a LB should help with. My guess is that McLaughlin ends up on the Practice Squad, but he’ll certainly be worth keeping an eye on during Training Camp.)
63. TE Davon Drew (The Ravens were EXTREMELY disappointed with Drew after drafting him out of East Carolina last year. So much so that they let him go before re-signing him when the Miami Dolphins gave up on him as well. That being said, Drew has looked pretty good in the offseason, and will have a chance to compete for a roster spot. Outperforming Dennis Pitta would be the easiest way to get a spot, but seeing as how the team has a soft spot for TE’s, there’s at least a chance they end up keeping 4. Drew’s chances would improve if he offered the team something out of the backfield as well.)
davondrew

64. WR Marcus Smith (Marcus Smith is a dark horse to make the roster, but it is worth remembering that he WOULD have made the roster last season before suffering a knee injury in a preseason win over the Washington Redskins. Smith faces a tough competition, but he is 6’1″, and has shown some promise during his short NFL career.)
65. CB Cary Williams (Speaking of 6’1″, height might give Williams a chance to make the roster on the defensive side as well. It looks like Williams will be battling Travis Fisher for a roster spot, but the team could end up keeping more DB’s-especially considering the question marks surrounding Fabian Washington and Lardarius Webb’s return from injury. Williams hung around on the roster at the end of last season, but still has a long road ahead of him.)
66. S KJ Gerard (The 2009 UFA out of Northern Arizona impressed the team from Day 1, so much so that he was eventually promoted to the roster from the Practice Squad when Haruki Nakamura was hurt. That being said, it’s hard to picture the team keeping a 5th safety, and it seems unlikely that Gerard would make the squad as a corner ahead of the likes of Fisher and Williams. His versatility and special teams ability give him a shot, but his best chance is if someone ahead of him gets hurt.)
67. CB Prince Miller (Of this year’s group of UFA’s, Miller and Mike McLaughlin appear to have the best chance at making the roster. Miller has had the chance to mark quality SEC receivers during his career at Georgia, but 5’8″ certainly isn’t the ideal height for a corner. He’s played well in the offseason, and his ability to return kicks could give him a real chance to make the roster.)
68. WR Justin Harper (Justin Harper found his way to the active roster late in the season, but the number of quality receivers ahead of him makes it unlikely to envision him finding his way on the roster out of Training Camp. He has a way of impressing fans with leaping catches in practice, but has dropped way too many catches to be considered a serious candidate to make the roster. If that changes over the summer, he’ll work his way up the list.)
69. DT Lamar Divens (Divens is in the deep group of D-Linemen that are trying to make the roster. Unfortunately, he played in just 3 games in 2008 before missing the entire 2009 season due to a shoulder injury. He’s in the “looks like a Raven” mix, but he’ll have to win a job against the likes of Talavou, McKinney and Art Jones.)
70. CB Marcus Paschal (Paschal and John Harbaugh have a history that dates back to their time together with the Philadelphia Eagles, but Paschal has still only played 5 games in his NFL career. He has a shot to make the roster considering the team needs secondary depth, but I wouldn’t describe his shot as “likely.”)
——————————
71. OT Joe Reitz (Reitz has snuck his way onto the Practice Squad over the last two seasons-one of which was cut short by shoulder injury. He’s 6’7″ and 315 pounds but his still never played real football game in his life, either at the college of pro level. His size makes him promising, but his lack of experience makes him unlikely.)
72. WR Eron Riley (Riley is 6’3″ and one of the more likeable guys in the locker room, but the coaches want to see more explosiveness from him. If the team hadn’t upgraded at receiver over the offseason, I might think better of his chances of making the roster.)
73. DE William Van de Steeg (When I saw lower case letters on Van de Steeg’s jersey last summer in Westminster, I assumed he wouldn’t be around very long. He’s hung around Charm City longer than I expected, but I don’t expect it to be too much longer.)
74. OL Bryan Mattison (It’s nice to be the son of the offensive coordinator, but it probably isn’t nice enough to get Mattison on the roster. He was kept on the practice squad last season, and I imagine he’ll probably find his way on the practice squad again this year.)
75. OT Stefan Rodgers (Rodgers has been a part of 5 different teams during his 3 year NFL career; including the Buccaneers, Eagles, Jets and Jaguars. During that time, he has yet to make it on the field for 1 game. I don’t think that changes with the Ravens this season.)
76. LS Morgan Cox (Morgan Cox’s chances of making the roster actually aren’t all that bad. He just has to beat out Matt Katula, who will come in as an overwhelming favorite. If Katula hasn’t shaken off his elbow issues, Cox’s chances will improve.)
77. RB Curtis Steele (A lot of scouts really like Curtis Steele. The problem is, there isn’t an obvious role for the UFA out of Memphis. My guess is that he ends up on the practice squad, but making the 53 isn’t impossible.)
78. DE Albert McClellan (I haven’t heard a bad thing about the Ravens’ UFA out of Marshall. Problem is, I haven’t heard anything that makes me think he’ll really have a shot at making the roster.)
79. WR Rodelin Anthony (When you’re a 6’5″ receiver, scouts pay attention. But if the Ravens’ UFA out of UNLV wants to make the 53, he’s going to have to make a MAJOR impact between now and Labor Day.)
80. S Brad Jones (I think a lot of folks were confused about who exactly Brad Jones was when he signed out of Cincinnati. Jones is a rookie-not the LB who was drafted by and played for the Packers last season. The Ravens have had success with safeties from Cincinnati-see Nakamura, Haruki; but I don’t expect that to help Jones make the roster.)
——————————
81. WR Maurice Price (Price has bounced around during his career-making stops with the Chiefs, Pats, 49ers and Calgary Stampeders of the CFL before landing on the Ravens’ practice squad. I would be surprised if he found his way back.)
82. WR Chris Hannon (A 6’3″ receiver out of the University of Tennessee who has made stops in Kansas City, Carolina, San Francisco, Miami and Detroit should probably have a better chance of making the roster than I am giving him credit for. He’ll have plenty of time over the next few months to prove me wrong.)
83. DL John Fletcher (John Fletcher is a 6’6″ D-Lineman out of Wyoming. He has at least a chance at making the practice squad, but probably nothing more than that.)
84. OL Daniel Sanders (The UFA out of Colorado hasn’t given me-or anyone else-much of a reason to be able to say too much about him at this point. Maybe that will change.)
85. CB Courtney Smith (I’m not sure I had ever heard of Central Washington before the Ravens picked up Courtney Smith. He’ll have a chance to put the school on the map, but it’s a bit of an extreme longshot.)
86. CB Ashton Hall (The Ravens signed two undrafted members of the Thundering Herd following the draft. Of the two, Albert McClellan appears to be a bit farther ahead.)
87. C Digger Bujnoch (Before putting together this list, I could name 86 of the 87 players on the Ravens’ roster. The former Cincinnati Bearcats center was the only one I couldn’t.)

It will be interesting to see how the next few weeks play out, as each of these players will have a chance to improve their place on the list.

-G

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 13 May 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because I went over to Pimlico yesterday and they had ALL of my favorite things. Beer, oysters, and even crab balls…

crab balls

They did something with the horses too-hopefully someone else was paying more attention than I.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Bergesen sparkled as Orioles topped Mariners

You know, some people look at the O’s and say “they only have 10 wins.”

I look at the O’s and say “they have 10 more wins then they had on Opening Day.”

Watching Brad Bergesen early on last night, I got the sense that he was again benefitting from “swinging in the rain”, as the M’s were hacking. However, as the game moved on-I felt as though Bergesen was mixing his pitches really well, and would have been effective no matter what the weather was.

It’s nice to say something like that. I hope I can say it again tomorrow.

I hope I can say Luke Scott and Adam Jones had multi-hit games again tomorrow as well.

There’s a lot of things I hope. None of them have anything to do with Felix Hernandez throwing a perfect game. PLEASE DON’T LET THAT HAPPEN!!!!!!

2. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of win

When do we just annoint Alfredo Simon our lord and savior?

Things got a little hairy for Koji Uehara late last night, but thank God “Special Sauce” or whatever the hell the kids are calling him came in to finish things off.

I’m REALLY not convinced that Alfredo Simon is the next coming of Randy Myers, but I’m all for riding the Simon train until it comes crashing down. I mean, we’ve had MUCH worse over this 13 year span.

You know what, I’d probably be all for riding Alfredo Simon even if he ends up failing, just because I’d simply like to have more games with SAVE SITUATIONS!!!

10-24.

Hey, if this was a football game-we’d only be trailing by two possessions!

3. WNST.net’s Jay Trucker says Corey Patterson called up by Birds

As even Jay said yesterday via Facebook-

“Only Corey can save us now.”

No one is REALLY excited about Corey Patterson being back in Baltimore. No one is REALLY excited about Nolan Reimold going back down.

Unfortunately, wins and losses have to count for at least SOMETHING. I know that’s not the on-field picture that’s been painted; but it HAS to.

Nolan Reimold wasn’t helping the Orioles win. You can’t just keep sending someone out to the field that doesn’t help your team win.

Insert your own Kyle Boller joke here.

4. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester defends Andy MacPhail for uncomfortably posted fan video

UNCOMFORTABLE?!?!?

I’m not even kidding about this-I think watching “2 Girls 1 Cup” was less awkward than watching this.

Holy crap.

I still don’t know what the point of this video was. I know he threw in a “keep the faith” quip at the end of the video, but…umm…there were 3,000 people at OPACY last night. How much faith is there to be kept?!?!?

There was no apology for the disastrous start. There was no “this is my fault, and I’m going to fix it.” There was nothing more than a basic rundown that Mike Gonzalez struggled, Garrett Atkins is amongst the players who haven’t produced, and the team has had to face the Yankees and Red Sox early.

Umm….didn’t we already know that?

However, ol’ Drew Forrester DEFENDED HIM! Unbelievable! He gave him the pass for this DISASTER of a video! Not only that, but he said in our “Orange Crush” chat that “82-80 isn’t far away” for the Birds.

And with that, Drew Forrester was named “Apologist of the Morning” by “The Great Arbitrator”-HIMSELF!

History made again!

5. The AP’s John Kekis says Nationals prospect Strasburg shut down Norfolk Tides on farm

I’m not sure how many people stayed up to watch this on MASN last night, but…ummm…this kid Strasburg…it looks like he might be pretty good.

I’m not going to say he IS good yet, as he hasn’t recorded a single out at the MLB level.

BUT…it looks like the Nats are going to benefit greatly from having drafted him.

Before we move on from the Orioles, a reminder that they head back to the field this afternoon at Oriole Park at Camden Yards to wrap their 3 game set with the Seattle Mariners at 12:35. Felix Hernandez goes against Kevin Millwood. There’s a rumor that Glenn Clark might make an appearance at the ballpark today, but we’ll see. It might be a brief stop in the press box and then 6 innings of sitting in the stands and drinking beer.

I like to call that “Thursday.”

6. The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Lamar Divens expects to be cleared for practice next week

Divens joins a DT group that remains VERY deep for the Ravens despite the departures of Justin Bannan and Dwan Edwards this offseason.

Behind Haloti Ngata and Kelly Gregg there’s Terrence Cody-with Cory Redding splitting time with Trevor Pryce on the end.

Behind that group, there’s Kelly Talavou, Brandon McKinney and Arthur Jones even before you get to Lamar Divens. It’s a DEEP GROUP.

Should the Ravens be looking to make an upgrade at another position, this would likely be the position they have the depth to deal from. Do I expect them to? Not necessarily. But could it be possible? Absolutely it could be.

7. ESPN.com’s James Walker says Cam Cameron thinks Ravens’ offense can be ‘elite’

I don’t think anyone disagrees that they have the POTENTIAL to be elite.

Joe Flacco MUST progress in his development. Ray Rice needs to have another Pro Bowl caliber year. The impact of Anquan Boldin has to be both numbers for him and increased production from Derrick Mason, Todd Heap and Donte’ Stallworth. Jared Gaither and Michael Oher need to continue to hold down the tackle spots.

There are a lot of variables, but the pieces are there. If they remain healthy, there is absolutely a chance that Cam Cameron will be right.

I’ll say there’s a better chance of the Ravens having an elite offense than there is of me getting a date with Giorgia Palmas (Thanks Busted Coverage!)…

palmas

8. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Maryland to visit Penn State in Big Ten/ACC Challenge

You guys have been talking about how much you’ve wanted to see the Terrapins play the Nittany Lions, and now you got your way!

Sadly…it’s not in football.

The Terps and Lions make for one of the worst matchups in the Challenge this year. Plus, State College is TERRIBLE, so I can’t fathom any Maryland fan wanting to drive up there for the game. I guess Talor Battle is pretty good, but does anyone in Happy Valley even know there are other sports after football season is over?!?!?

Ugh.

Michigan State would have been nice. Wisconsin would have been fine. Purdue would have been great. Ohio State would have been great.

Penn State is none of those things. Penn State is just….awful.

9. Inside Lacrosse’s Sean Burns and Tommy Kehoe say Duke/Hopkins best of 1st round games in NCAA Tournament

I don’t think I disagree. Loyola/Cornell could be (if the Greyhounds can summon the success they had earlier in the season); but given how the Blue Jays played down the stretch, they have at least a chance to knock off the Blue Devils.
Before I move on from college sports, here’s a look at UMBC’s new logo (as we first passed along via Twitter -@WNST- yesterday.)

umbc 

I can dig it. Go Retrievers!

10. Maryland Jockey Club says Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver drew 8th post, named 5-2 favorite for Preakness

If you missed Paddy O’Prado jockey and former Preakness (as well as Derby and Belmont) winner Kent Desormeaux this morning, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault and check it out today. Drew also had the great John Feinstein and new Wake Forest coach (former UMBC coach) Jeff Bzdelik on the show this morning, check them out.

If you missed Alessandra Ambrosio over at Guyism, look what I found!

ambrosio

11. WNST.net’s Gary Quill says Lookin At Lucky 2nd choice at 3-1, drew 7th post

Bob Baffert seemed happy with the draw. Of course, Todd Pletcher seemed happy with the draw for Super Saver. A lof of people were happy at Pimlico yesterday. I mean, how could you not be? There were crab balls!!!

I’m starting to join the Bob Haynie bandwagon when it comes to Lookin At Lucky. I think he’ll get my money.

Or at least whatever money I have leftover after alcohol.

And finally, I leave you with this…

Congratulations to the Montreal Candiens for making sports fans in Pittsburgh sad this morning. Since they already made sports fans in Washington sad this postseason, they’re basically my heros!

Since it’s a big day in Canada today, here’s some Our Lady Peace…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CBBtorFg2I[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Live From Owings Mills: Ravens Re-Group For Mini-Camp

Posted on 07 May 2010 by Glenn Clark

1:29-Some notes worth passing along from today’s media availability at 1 Winning Drive:

-Regarding the Oher move to LT, John Harbaugh said it would be permanent as long as it was the “best thing for the team.” He declined to discuss much about why the decision was made.

If Gaither is upset about the move, he did a good job of hiding it today. He said he was “fine with it”, and that he thought Oher “would do a good job” in the role. He declined to comment on how it might impact his future free agency; and said he didn’t think it had anything to do with him not being here for the first OTA’s. Gaither told us that the last time he played Right Tackle was his freshman year at Maryland.

-Harbaugh said that Mark Clayton is dealing with a SHOULDER issue, not a hamstring. I would have bet money it was the other thing.

-Ray Lewis wasn’t particularly interested in talking about any Super Bowl aspirations for the team, nor his own NFL future. Of course, it IS May.

-You can hear now from John Harbaugh, Ray Lewis, Anquan Boldin, Joe Flacco, Sergio Kindle and Donte’ Stallworth in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault at WNST.net!

11:52-Greetings from 1 Winning Drive, where I’ll try to keep things brief before joining Bob Haynie on AM1570 WNST in a few minutes.

A couple of notes worth passing on from Ravens practice this morning:

-The biggest story to come out of practice today will be the shift at Offensive Tackle. With Michael Oher taking every snap at LT and Jared Gaither every snap at RT, it is safe to assume that the Ravens are planning on making this a permanent move. It was expected that Oher would GET snaps at LT this weekend, but not that he would become the permanent fixture at the position. It makes sense given that Oher has been considered the team’s future LT since he was drafted out of Ole Miss, we just didn’t know the timetable would be this quick.

-S Ed Reed (hip) was not seen here. We didn’t expect to see him practice, but did not know if we would be in attendance. S Haruki Nakamura (fibula) is also not practicing.

-DT’s Kelly Gregg (shoulder) and Haloti Ngata (chest) are here, but were not working during practice. Terrence Cody and Kelly Talavou worked with the first team instead.

-CB’s Fabian Washington (knee) and Lardarius Webb (knee) were not practicing as expected. Both are question marks for the start of Training Camp. Chris Carr worked as the 2nd CB in his place.

-LB Jarret Johnson (shoulder) did some drills, but was by no means a full participant. Prescott Burgess appeared to get the bulk of the work in his place.

-WR Donte’ Stallworth appears to be third on the depth chart right now. However, Mark Clayton was not much of a participant; so it’s hard to gauge where he is on that list. I’m not aware of Clayton’s injury-but if I had to guess I’d probably say hamstring.

-TE Ed Dickson looks to be 2nd on the depth chart behind Todd Heap, with Dennis Pitta 3rd.

-The Ravens officially signed 9 Rookie Free Agents today:
WR Rodelin Anthony (UNLV)
LS Morgan Cox (Tennessee)
DL John Fletcher (Wyoming)
DB Ashton Hall (Marshall)
DE Albert McClellan (Marshall)
FB Mike McLaughlin (Boston College)
CB/KR Prince Miller (Georgia)
CB/KR Courtney Smith (Central Washington)
RB Curtis Steele (Memphis)

There are other players here on a tryout basis as well; although their jerseys are without names.

-We are expected to hear from John Harbaugh, Sergio Kindle, Ray Lewis, Joe Flacco and Anquan Boldin around 12:30. I will update with more from them as soon as I can. Make sure you’re following us on Twitter (@WNST).

-G

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Ravens Agree to 2 Year Deal With Cory Redding

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Ravens Agree to 2 Year Deal With Cory Redding

Posted on 22 March 2010 by Glenn Clark

The Baltimore Ravens have announced that they have agreed in principle on a two-year deal with former Seattle Seahawks and Detroit Lions DL Cory Redding.

Redding joins a Ravens D-Line that has recently lost both Dwan Edwards and Justin Bannan. He joins Haloti Ngata, Kelly Gregg, Trevor Pryce, Brandon McKinney, Kelly Talavou and Lamar Divens in the Ravens’ D-Line rotation.

Redding may immediately step in at DE to replace the departed Edwards, with Pryce switching in for obvious passing downs. However, D-Line will still likely be a position the Ravens try to upgrade during the NFL Draft.

Here are Redding’s career statistics, thanks to the AP (via WNST.net):

Career Defensive Stats
Year Team G TK Asst Sacks Yds Int Yds TDs PD FF FR
2003 Det 9 6 1 0.0 0.0 0 0 0 1 0 0
2004 Det 16 34 6 3.0 20.0 0 0 0 0 1 2
2005 Det 16 26 7 1.0 4.0 0 0 0 4 1 1
2006 Det 16 38 10 8.0 43.5 0 0 0 0 2 1
2007 Det 16 27 10 1.0 5.0 0 0 0 1 0 2
2008 Det 13 31 6 3.0 19.5 0 0 0 0 0 0
2009 Sea 15 18 2 2.0 10.0 0 0 0 0 0 2
Totals 101 180 42 18.0 102.0 0 0 0 6 4 8

redding

1:10pm update: Cory Redding just joined Bob Haynie and Mark Suchy on “The Bob Haynie Show” on AM1570 WNST. Here are some of the things he had to say….

-”Love the program, love the facility, love the organization. Respect the men who play there.”
-Ravens were “a perfect fit” for him in free agency.
-“I don’t care what my position is. Just to be out on the field will be fun for me.”
-“It’s gonna be a unique situation” playing with Ravens defense.
-
“Can’t wait to get ready to work with you guys and pursue the playoffs.”
-
“I love the game of football. I love to compete.”
-“I will definitely do my best” in games against Steelers.
-Cory also told Bob & Mark about his Foundation…The Cory Redding Foundation…visit CoryReddingFoundation.org

If you missed the interview (SHAME ON YOU!), you can hear the entire chat in the Audio Vault at WNST.net.

12:30pm update:
Nestor Aparicio caught up with Ravens coach John Harbaugh and this is what he had to say about the addition of Redding in Orlando at the owners’ meetings:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oq5r4UFgOX0[/youtube]

12:20pm update: John Harbaugh just joined Nestor and the other Baltimore media covering the league meetings in Orlando. Here are his thoughts on Cory Redding:

“We’re excited about Cory because he fits us. He plays with a high motor, plays with great energy. He’s a sideline to sideline type of player. He’s excited to be a Raven. We think he’s a similar player to Dwan (Edwards). We hope he falls right in at that spot. He’s a really good player against the run. He’s stout and he plays real hard.”

Harbaugh’s chat with the media will be available shortly via WNSTv.

12pm update: Here are some thoughts from Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome:

“This will sound a little like a broken record, but Cory is a guy who plays like a Raven. He hustles, he plays with intelligence, and he can play multiple positions like many of our defensive players. He’s been a starter at both inside tackle and defensive end. And I am sure our coaches will use him in both positions.”

WNST.net’s own Nestor Aparicio is live in Orlando at the annual NFL meetings, he will continue to provide us information from John Harbaugh, Dick Cass, etc. as it becomes available. Make sure you follow us on Twitter (@WNST) for the latest.

-G

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 17 March 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because…..well……it’s St. Patrick’s Day. I’m not Irish, and I’ll never be the type to say “I’m Irish for today” or anything like that. BUT, I enjoy Bangers & Mash, Smithwick’s AND Flogging Molly…..

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXNj-4BXLng[/youtube]

If you’re interested in coming out and buying me my first 6-72 beers tonight, let me know.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Gary Williams, Greivis Vasquez making ‘final run’ together

Trying to spare any sort of poetic statement, this is going to be a special run for this combination of coach and player.

Vasquez is not only the best player Gary Williams has had since Juan Dixon, it’s the best relationship he’s had with a player since Juan Dixon. Juan was famously known for being willing to hurl things right back at Williams, including language that would make some of us blush.

This type of story makes sense, as every time out might be the last time this coach and player share the floor together. There’s no doubt in my mind that the coach isn’t particularly interested in thinking about the first game he’ll play AFTER the player moves on.

2. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Vasquez coming into NCAA Tournament off ‘rare’ bad night in Greensboro

Of course, seeing as how THIS is the most exciting thing to do in Greensboro….

tiddlywinks
…isn’t EVERY night in Greensboro a bad night?

Now, with that being said…there is a question about whether or not Vasquez has reached an emotional high point with the win at Duke and the ACC regular season title split, or if he has another level he can reach over the next week(s).

That being said, even reaching “another level” might not guarantee victory for the Terps-as the competition won’t be easy.

3. Triangle Business Journal’s Jeff Drew says Maryland amongst most popular basketball teams in country

WHAT???

I would have assumed this team would have been higher on the list….

ucla

Seriously though, do you really think the Terps are the 4th most popular college basketball team in the country? North Carolina and Duke make sense at the top of the list, but I would assume Kentucky, Kansas, UCLA and UConn would be next on the list.

I guess it’s cool, as it means this Terrapins team has made some traction nationally. But I can’t help but wonder just how realistic the numbers are.

4. The Sun’s Jeff Barker says Maryland, Morgan State fans having tough time arranging for trips to see teams in NCAA Tournament

It IS a shame. Morgan’s trip to Buffalo isn’t terrible-and seeing as how their tickets sold out, clearly there are plenty of Bears fans who have decided that they’re ready to make the trip.

Spokane is just unfortunate.

Obviously, SOMEONE has to go play out west. Of course, playing in a bigger city with more flight options might help to limit the damage. I am absolutely NOT a fan of the NCAA playing Tournament games in places like Spokane, Boise, and other less than desirable cities.

I mean, what’s wrong with playing like nice places like Miami, San Diego, New Orleans and Baltimore*?

(*indicates one of these places clearly doesn’t belong)

5. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester says Towson confirms Pat Kennedy will return as head coach next season

My first reaction to this is “obviously Towson is saying that winning really doesn’t matter to them.”

My second reaction is only slightly more positive; “Towson is clearly saying that money is such a mess that they can’t really be too concerned about basketball.”

Look, I think Pat Kennedy is a better coach than a lot of guys who could have jobs. That being said, it isn’t working at Towson. They won some games down the stretch, including 5 of their last 8 regular season games and 6 of their last 10 including the CAA Tournament. That stretch included a win at William & Mary, which helped to knock the Tribe off the at-large bubble.

BUT….in a perfect world, I would imagine the athletic department there would try to use a coaching search and hire to pump some new life into a program that admittedly does have a few good pieces in place.

6. Inside Lacrosse says Chris Pastirik scored with 6 seconds left to help Towson beat Navy for first win of season

It was a nice night for lacrosse at Unitas Stadium, and a big win for Tony Seaman and the Tigers, who were in real danger of getting off to an 0-5 start with a showdown looming against Virginia on Saturday.

Unfortunately, Navy is in a BIT of trouble-as they have now fallen to 3-4. They play Holy Cross in Annapolis Saturday and then travel to Colgate a week later; but their stretch after that is brutal. Before the Patriot League Tournament, they play Georgetown, at Maryland, Army at M&T Bank Stadium, and Johns Hopkins. Yikes.

If you’re interested in seeing some lacrosse this afternoon before starting your St. Patty’s festivities, head over to Owings Mills to Stevenson host Stevens (yeah, you read that right) at 4pm at the Caves Athletic Complex.

7. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Dwan Edwards agreed to 4 year deal with Bills

4 years, $18 million

Must be nice.

Meanwhile, this will be my lunch today…..

ramen

(Edit from GMC: That’s not because I’m poor, it’s because I LOVE Pork flavored Ramen noodles.)

In all seriousness, the Ravens will miss Dwan Edwards. He had found himself a nice spot playing on obvious running downs while Trevor Pryce rotated in for obvious passing downs.

With Edwards and Justin Bannan gone, D-Line becomes an even more important spot for the Ravens to try to upgrade in the NFL Draft. Also, expect Brandon McKinney, Kelly Talavou and maybe even Lamar Divens to be in the mix. There might even be another guy….

8. Baltimore Ravens Official Site’s Mike Duffy says Paul Kruger ‘bulking up’ for chance to move from LB to DE

Look at that! Another guy!

If Paul Kruger is going to be a Defensive End in the NFL, he obviously WILL have to bulk up. He’ll need to look a bit more like Kyle Vanden Bosch….

vandenbosch

….than “Sunshine” from “Remember the Titans”…..

titans

9. Bowling Green News says Ravens were in attendance for Falcons’ Pro Day to see players like WR Freddie Barnes

This comes after the Ravens had previously attended Youngstown State Pro Day to watch WR Donald Jones.

Does it mean the Ravens are no longer interested in taking a receiver in Round 1 and are instead focusing on receivers in mid-rounds and later rounds? Not necessarily.

In fact, had Demaryius Thomas been able to work out at Georgia Tech Pro Day-I would assume that the Ravens would have been particularly interested.

BUT-my GUESS remains that the Ravens will go Tight End or defense in Round 1, then address Wide Receiver later in the Draft.

Just a guess.

10. MLB.com’s Kelly Thesier says Chad Moeller homered as Orioles topped Twins

Told you the Birds had a catcher for the future!!!

By the way-break up the O’s! 3 straight wins! A reminder-the World Series is in October, you’ll want to put aside money now to make sure you guarantee a seat.

(Edit from GMC: I’m kidding. I’m actually really happy they’ve won 3 in a row-but I wish it was Kevin Millwood making a strong start, not David Hernandez.)

11. Carroll County Times’ Rich Dubroff says Steve Johnson returned to Birds from Giants

Which means Dave Johnson has been crying for some 18 hours.

The organization expected Johnson to be back, so this isn’t much of a surprise, honestly.

But if the city of Baltimore was going to take someone from Northern California, why couldn’t it have been Allison Stokke??? (Left, thanks Busted Coverage)

stokke

12. Daily Racing Form’s Joe DeVivo says Pimlico Special, duPont Distaff cut from Pimlico season

So…..does this mean we get booze back at Preakness, or what?

And finally, I leave you with this.

After posting the Stone Cold Steve Austin beer truck video yesterday, I had multiple requests for the Kurt Angle milk truck video. Quite possibly the greatest thing WWE ever did…..

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwzjPb36p6M[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…..

-G

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Friday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 05 March 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Friday!

It was a Happy Friday for me because…

1-the Morgan State thing was AMAZING last night

and 2-With sentencing being oft-delayed for Lil’ Wayne (it looks like Monday now), I’m just gonna go ahead and give props to Weezy today, since I don’t want this to keep dragging out. Dude is getting the Plaxico Burress treatment in New York, which is unfortunate. But props to Weezy.

“One Way Trip” is my favorite track off of “Rebirth” (Language NSFW)….

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNlVQ8G5USI[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say….

1. The AP says Reggie Holmes’ 36 lead Morgan State in rout of Coppin State

I can’t say enough about what an incredible night it was at Hill Field House.

Was it like Senior Night and Maryland/Duke in College Park? Maybe not, but the raw emotion was very similar.

Reggie Holmes has staked his claim as one of the greatest college basketball players in Baltimore history, and last night was some form of coronation. With some of the greatest players in Charm City history present (including Sam Cassell, the reigning Dean of Baltimore Basketball), Holmes put on a show for the ages against an Eagles team-that even in a down year-remains the Bears’ biggest rival.

But the event was so much more than that. It was chilling. It came in front of a packed house, where fans would have waited hours for the chance to see Holmes’ night. A group of 30 or so fans rushed the floor BEFORE the game to help celebrate Holmes (who surpassed Marvin “The Eraser” Webster as the all-time leading scorer in MSU history in the win). Coach Todd Bozeman told us after the game that it was “Cherry Hill” that rushed the floor-and joked that the team had thought about playing the game in that particular Baltimore neighborhood.

It was just special. If you weren’t there, I’m sorry. Both the Bears and Eagles are now off until the MEAC Tournament. Coppin State is the 11 seed, they’ll face UMES in the Opening Round Wednesday. Morgan State is the 1 seed, they’ll face the Howard/North Carolina A&T winner Wednesday night.

2. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terps rolling towards Top 4 seed in NCAA Tournament

Of course, Patrick didn’t give me much better news than that. For travel reasons, I’m hoping the Terps end up in Providence or Buffalo, but neither seems likely. If it can’t be one of those locations, then I would hope it would be somewhere nice. For example, Jacksonville….

jax

…but Patrick says San Jose is more likely…..

siliconvalley

I’m hoping for New Orleans…..

http://www.partyonwheelsusa.com/images/party_girls.jpg

….But Patrick says Spokane is much more likely….

nothing

3. Fredericksburg Free Lance Star’s Steve DeShazo says Terps can clinch at least share of ACC regular season title for first time since ’02 with win tomorrow at Virginia

I’ll be in Charlottesville tomorrow afternoon, live blogging at WNST.net. Luke Jones and I will chime in via Twitter, make sure you follow us (@WNST) during the game.

I can’t stand the Wahoos myself, I think “Auld Lang Syne” is a stupid fight song, and I think the only people who should wear ties to a game are coaches. At least it isn’t football, so I don’t have to see them do the stupid “arms around each other” thing after touchdowns.

The Cavs didn’t offer much when they came to Comcast Center, but I don’t imagine they’ll just roll over at John Paul Jones Arena. Sylven Landesberg played 36 minutes against Boston College despite a thigh injury, and should be good to go tomorrow. The good news is that Mamdi Diane graduated a season ago, meaning he can’t kill the Terps again.

If they can get the job done, they get a banner. That’s pretty special.

4. Washington Post’s Gene Wang says Maryland women topped North Carolina, will face Duke today in ACC Tournament quarterfinals

Congratulations to Brenda Frese and the Terps, who need to keep winning to have a shot at returning to the NCAA Tournament.

They played Duke tough for 40 minutes in College Park, and for 30-some minutes at Cameron Indoor Stadium.

Now, I have to pose a question that apparently someone told me was sexist. With no offense to the Terps-as I’ll watch any game they play, but as far as the rest of the ACC Women’s Tournament is concerned-I think I’ll choose cole slaw wrestling instead…

coleslaw

5. UNC Wilmington Official Site previews today’s CAA Tournament opener against Towson

This is a matchup that Pat Kennedy’s club SHOULD win, but that obviously doesn’t mean they will. Even if they do, a date with Old Dominion looms Saturday in Richmond, meaning this will likely be a short trip for the Tigers.

That being said, there will be a LOT of good basketball at the CAA Tournament this weekend, most of which will air live on the Comcast Network. Work taking a poke at-especially on Sunday when there really isn’t anything else on. (NASCAR?)

6. Loyola Official Site previews tonight’s MAAC Tournament opener against Manhattan

Much like Towson, this is a very winnable game for the Greyhounds up in Albany; but that certainly doesn’t mean they WILL win.

I don’t think new AD Jim Paquette was brought to Loyola to clean house or make drastic changes (most young AD’s aren’t brought in for that reason), but there’s clearly some heat on Jimmy Patsos. A couple of wins this weekend could really ease that.

7. Inside Lacrosse’s Terry Foy says Maryland’s Ryan Young, Hopkins’ Kyle Wharton, Loyola’s Collin Finnerty worth watching at M&T Bank Stadium tomorrow

If I were staying in Baltimore, TRUST ME I would be at the Konica Minolta Face-Off Classic tomorrow. It’s a great event (as is the Day of Rivals event IL does), and there’s a really cool atmosphere to it.

These are big games for these teams, too.

Maryland scored a ton of goals-but they really needed a minor miracle to beat Georgetown. Duke barely beat Bucknell and lost to Notre Dame, meaning this could be a clash of ACC rivals who have shown some signs of being “pretenders.”

Coaching changes always cause trouble, but Chris Bates is hoping to keep Princeton in the Top 10 nationally. They gave up 14 goals in a win over Hofstra to open the season. Hopkins is 3-0, but they’re coming off an 8-7 nailbiter over Siena.

Loyola is off to a hot start as well, but facing an Irish team that as I just mentioned has already topped the Blue Devils this season. The Hounds lost a close game to the Fighting Irish in Atlanta a season ago, this would be a real statement for Charley Toomey’s team before opening the Ridley Athletic Complex.

8. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Mark Clayton, Marshal Yanda got 2nd round tenders, Adam Terry not tendered by Ravens

Going with the 2nd round tender instead of the 1st round tender means that while the Ravens want to bring both Clayton and Yanda back, but would be willing to accept solid compensation if another NFL team is REALLY interested in them.

Clayton would come back with a cheap price tag (the type of price tag that means he wouldn’t necessarily have to be guaranteed a roster spot), as I just don’t see teams being interested in offering a 2nd round pick for him. Yanda will be a bit intriguing, but I think will ultimately end up returning as well.

Adam Terry could also return, as teams are not likely to be banging down the door of an oft-injured OT.

9. The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Anquan Boldin, Kevin Water most likely WR options for Ravens

Walter is the easy call. The Ravens could bring him by 1 Winning Drive this weekend and try to make sure he doesn’t leave. There’s no off the field concerns, even if he isn’t your typical #1 receiver. He’s still 6’3″, and the Ravens DESPERATELY need a taller receiver.

Boldin is attractive, as the Cardinals are rumored to be looking for no more than a 3rd round pick in return. But he’s got some question marks-including a few injury issues and some tangles with coaches in the past-including former offensive coordinator Todd Haley.

It always works that way. They’re attractive, but you’re just not 100% certain they’re a perfect fit. Sorta like Nicki Minaj….

minaj

10. ProFootballTalk.com/NBC Sports’ Gregg Rosenthal says Broncos pursuing Dwan Edwards, Justin Bannan

Sadly, this is the business of football. The Ravens don’t want to see either of these players walk away-but with money tied up elsewhere, a team like Denver could easily view these players with a higher value than the Ravens could match.

The Ravens love Bannan off the field, but they’re deep at DT-and a Kelly Talavou or Brandon McKinney could move into the D-Line rotation. Dwan Edwards found a real role for himself (despite making way for Trevor Pryce in obvious passing situations), and I get the feeling the Ravens will really try to get him back.

11. Carroll County Times’ Rich Dubroff says Matusz gave up 2 run homer in Orioles’ loss to Rays Thursday

Apparently it wasn’t exactly a ball that was crushed, but it was a home run nonetheless.

The Birds return to action tonight against the Pirates in Sarasota, Chris Tillman gets his first Grapefruit League start against Zach Duke.

12. ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark says Andy MacPhail had approached Tejada about moving to 3B before trading him to Houston

It’s a pretty good read about how both Tejada and Placido Polanco are making the move to third base this season.

You can read it…..or you could watch the video of Brittney Griner punching Jordan Barncastle again. Your call.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EtaPtQnu370[/youtube]

And finally, I leave you with this.

Have you heard the story about…ahem….”actress” Samantha Ryan?

samantharyan

According to the Huffington Post, Ryan is a BIG Kansas Jayhawks fan, and Wednesday night’s game against Kansas State fell on her birthday, so she put out on Twitter than she was looking for tickets. She got them, apparently thanks to assistant coach Kurtis Townsend.

Please insert your own “Friends with Benefits” joke here.

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983….

-G

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